Report Title:

Environmental Protection



Requires retailers in the State to distribute only recyclable, reusable, or compostable checkout bags.



H.B. NO.



















     SECTION 1.  The legislature finds that non-recyclable non-compostable plastic bags provided to customers by grocery stores and other retailers throughout the State are a hazard to the natural environment.  Plastic bags require fossil fuel to manufacture, contribute to litter, endanger wildlife, and crowd landfills with non-biodegradable waste.  The legislature further finds that the State has an interest in protecting its natural environment and decreasing the amount of waste flowing into its landfills.  The purpose of this Act is to protect the natural environment of the State by requiring retailers in the State to distribute only compostable and recyclable checkout bags to customers.

     SECTION 2.  Chapter 342H, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new part to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:


     §342H-A   Definitions.  As used in this part, unless the context otherwise requires:

     "ASTM Standard" means the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM)'s International standard 06400 for compostable plastic.

     "Checkout bag" means a carryout bag that is provided by a store to a customer at the point of sale.

     "Compostable" means that the product or package meets ASTM standards for compostablility.

     "Compostable plastic bag" means a plastic bag that will break down into, or otherwise become part of, usable compost (e.g., soil-conditioning material, mulch) in a safe and timely manner.

     "Department" means the department of the health.

     "Director" means the director of health.

     "Person" means an individual, trust, firm, joint stock company, corporation, cooperative, partnership, limited liability company, or association.

     "Pharmacy" means a retail use where the profession of pharmacy by a pharmacist licensed by the State is practiced and where prescriptions (and possibly other merchandise) are offered for sale, excluding those retail uses located inside a hospital.

     "Recyclable" means material that can be sorted, cleansed, and reconstituted available recycling collection programs for the purpose of using the altered form in the manufacture of a new product.  Recycling does not include burning, incinerating, converting, or otherwise thermally destroying solid waste.

     "Recyclable paper bag" means a paper bag that meets all of the following requirements:

     (1)  Contains no old growth fiber;

     (2)  Is 100 per cent recyclable overall and contains a minimum of 40 per cent post-consumer recycled content; and

     (3)  Displays the words "Reusable" and "Recyclable" in a highly visible manner on the outside of the bag.

     "Reusable bag" means a bag with handles that is specifically designed and manufactured for multiple reuse and is:

     (1)  Made of cloth or other machine washable fabric;

     (2)  Made of durable plastic that is at least 2.25 mils thick; or

     (3)  Both.

     "Store" means a retail establishment located within the State that meets either of the following requirements:

     (1)  Is a full-line, self-service supermarket with gross annual sales of not less than $2,000,000, and which sells a line of dry grocery, canned goods, or nonfood items and some perishable items; or

     (2)  Is a retail pharmacy with at least five locations under the same ownership within the State.

     §342H-B  Mandatory use of recyclable and compostable checkout bags.  (a)  All stores shall provide only the following as checkout bags to customers:  recyclable paper bags, compostable plastic bags, or reusable bags, or both.

     (b)  Violation of the requirements of subsection (a) shall subject a store to penalties set forth in this part or as established by rule pursuant to this part.

     (c)  Nothing in this section shall be read to preclude stores from making reusable bags available for sale to customers.

     §342H-C  Implementation.  The director shall adopt rules under chapter 91 necessary for the purpose of this part.

     §342H-D  Enforcement and penalties.  Violation of section 342H-B shall constitute a violation as defined in section 701-107 and shall be enforceable by police officers.  Any person who violates section 342H-B shall be subject to:

     (1)  For a first violation, a fine of not more than $100;

     (2)  For a second violation within one year, a fine of not more than $200; and

     (3)  For a third or subsequent violation within one year, a fine of not more than $500.

     §342H-E  Administrative penalties.  In addition to any other administrative or judicial remedy provided by this part or by rules adopted under this part, the director is authorized to impose by order the following administrative penalties:

     (1)  For a first violation, a fine of not more than $200;

     (2)  For a second violation within one year, a fine of not more than $400; and

     (3)  For a third or subsequent violation within one year, a fine of not more than $600.

     §342H-F  Injunctive and other relief.  The director may institute a civil action in any court of competent jurisdiction for injunctive and other relief to prevent any violation of this part, any rule adopted pursuant to this part, to collect administrative penalties, or to obtain other relief.  The court shall have power to grant relief in accordance with the Hawaii rules of civil procedure."

     SECTION 3.  This Act does not affect rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun, before its effective date.

     SECTION 4.  Nothing in this Act shall be interpreted or applied so as to create any requirement, power, or duty in conflict with any federal or state law.

     SECTION 5.  In codifying the new sections added by section 2 of this Act, the revisor of statutes shall substitute appropriate section numbers for the letters used in designating the new sections in this Act.

     SECTION 6.  This Act shall take effect on January 1, 2010.